(Some New Brunswick Friday entertainment)
(Some New Brunswick Friday entertainment)
Then Came Each Actor Upon His Ass
And it was good.
So very good.
And each had food
And unto himself
The feedbag was full
The groaning board groaned
The drink was abundant
The water trough quenched
The wine barrel quenched
And it was good
And so the first day passed.
Save them for later.
Now, hear me out, because I’ve been thinking about this.
First, some full disclosure. I, myself, aspire some day to make $5M, so that is my starting point on “rich”. I don’t begrudge anyone having $5,000,000. A pleasant, round number, which most people will still have to strive for. And – all things being equal – someone with $5M isn’t really causing much corruption and destruction to the earth. Leave them alone. They buy stuff. They give big tips.
But, anyone above $5M – well, they’re, er, fair game. Get out you bows and arrows.
Now, everyone is worried about the Economy. Not the earth we live on, and not the myriad types of life that exist upon it. “Money makes the world go round”, as is sung in Cabaret. But money (and homo sapiens sapiens love for it) makes the World die. Bye-bye. It was fun while it lasted.
However, why not wed two practical ideas (one very popular at the moment) and save the Earth two fold, by getting rid of the elderly and the rich? The Elderly are sucking the life out of the Earth, taking resources and giving little back. Sure, they are the ones who made the prosperity in the first place, but their time has come. Let the species survive. Get them out on those ice flows while there are still ice flows.
Instead of crematoria just getting rid of the Elderly bodies, adjust them to a lower flame and, only figuratively fry them up. It can be a new twist on “aged” meat. Spicing optional.
And then, when a taste for a human delicacy has been honed, turn to the rich. They are well fed, generally in good physical shape, and already nicely-flavoured from their extravagant life style. Succulent suppers all around, with plenty left over for hearty stews Red wine or white at the discretion of discerning diners.
Yes, this is a modest proposal.
I was going to make spaghetti for the weekend but an ‘end of the world’ freezing rain storm is (literally) on the horizon, so …
And since I did not have enough spaghetti noodles (nor redred wine) I had to brave the mean little snow flakes that felt as if they were cutting my face, and get both.
Happily, all the other ingredients were already in place, and the process began.
Two cans of prepared tomato sauce (with roasted garlic). Two large onions. Two stalks of celery. Five cloves of garlic. Chop everything that is to be chopped, with no piece larger than your thumbnail. Put them into the pot of prepared sauce. Put on low heat.
Take as much lean hamburger as you think is healthy (I stop at a kilogram/two pounds). Put some of the chopped garlic and onion in a frying pan with a couple tablespoons of olive oil. Cook them up until the kitchen smells wonderful. Add the hamburger. Let it all cook as you stir them up. Stop when the meat is brown.
Add the meat to the pot. I never drain. And a half cup of whatever wine you are going to drink with the spaghetti. And two tablespoons of Parmesan cheese. Add a quarter teaspoon of sugar. Bring to a bubbling boil while stirring. Reduce heat and simmer for two hours, stirring a few times per half hour.
Pour on cooked spaghetti noodles.
Sprinkle on an outlandish amount of Parmesan cheese
Drink a glass or two of the wine.
My father, who helped liberate Italy in the Second World War, told of the time he was invited into a farmhouse to share a meal. Spaghetti sauce was simmering away in a cauldron in a fireplace. He was told that same sauce had been simmering for decades.
[Franz Kafka and his sister, Ottla.]
In my novel, Kafka In The Castle, I fill in the many diary entries Franz Kafka either did not make, or destroyed after the fact. He would have made no references to an actual ‘Thanksgiving Day’, but I feel this is close enough.
30 September 1917
There was a knocking at the window this morning. A polite and concise rap rap rap. It awoke me while the room was barely light.
Who could want me so early? And then again, an insistent rap rap rap. I was confused, wondering where I was. The panic of Prague weighted down the covers, and I was sorry I had opened my eyes. The room, the smells – even the bed – was not familiar, so I was both bothered and assured by the strangeness.
When I realized I was not in Prague – for who could knock on my third floor window – I remembered I was in Zurau, where things were different. Here my window looked onto a yard, and anyone could be at it. Was there something wrong? Was Ottla after my help? I even wondered, as I searched for my slippers, if her young man had somehow arranged leave from the army, and after much travail had managed to reach the wrong room. I could understand that very well.
I walked hesitantly over to the window, and cautiously pulled back the curtain. Such a commotion ensued that I stepped back in some fright. A bird flew immediately past the glass, its wings frantic as it screeched in agitation. It had been perched on my window ledge, pecking away at the frame. Ottla says it may have been after insects or grubs settled in for the winter.
“Insects in the walls of the house?” I asked. “Yes.” She was quite matter-of-fact. “It is a warm place for them during the cold months.” I was not inclined to argue with the logic, but neither had I thought I would be existing in such close proximity with the tenants of nature.
Houses for warmth and bugs for food. It is a blend of the base and the subtle which I can appreciate. Much – I like to think – as does the annoyed bird.
On a recent bus trip through the forests and hills and valleys, which offered kilometres of burgeoning Fall colours, and many other delightful distant scenes, this wee incident happened at a bus stop.
The bus went into a small village because a couple were getting off. The bus stop is in a parking lot of a Mall, beside a Tim Horton’s (I think).
Anyway, as the couple got off, a heavy-duty Ford pick-up drove in beside the bus. Attached to the truck was a a longish metal open-bed trailer. On the trailer was a deceased female moose. Perhaps it was too big to drape over the hood of the truck. This was a commonplace occurrence in the days of my youth. Or are those days long gone?
Buddy with the moose pulled up beside the Liquor Store.
Out he gets and walks with purpose into that fine establishment.
Intones the bus driver:
“There you have the perfect combination. A dead moose and a bottle of rum to celebrate.”
Please, Ladies and Gentlemen, I think it’s time to – please, if you don’t mind – it really is time to begin our – thank you, that’s much better – time for our meeting to start.
As you can see by looking around, this gathering is exclusively for Department Heads, and there will be no minutes taken. These projections are for your ears only.
Not only would we not wish another company to get them, but there is a chance the general public may become concerned, little realising the economics of our endeavours. A brief history of colours, dyes and artificial essences will give us a place to start. Run the strawberry jam, please.
As you can see, Ladies and Gentlemen, the colours on the slide are excellent. The rich red hue of the strawberries is exactly the colour you’ll find in the jar. We spent years developing that dye. Also, the years that went into getting the artificial taste and smell to adhere to the colour is something that most people would not imagine.
Of course, even with our best efforts, there has always been a problem with that cloying, rather heavy sensation on the tongue. That has been offset by the addition of more sugar. We had complaints when the product was first introduced, but it appears these have now disappeared with new generations who know nothing different. People just accept that strawberries, strawberry ice cream, and strawberry jam all have their own tastes. Next slide, please.
Oh, yes, well, we’ll pass over this slide quickly. I just put that in to show you we finally managed to get rid of the strawberries altogether. As you can see on the close-up, the red glob is really made from compressed fibres – as one of our chemists said, more straw than berry. Even the seeds are produced and added with a gum mixture. We have found that bone meal seems to last best of all.
Now, this next lot we are very proud of. Bronson, these should be of particular interest to you, since they deal with our fast food chain.
The buns are made of very porous fibre, almost like real dough. and the brown colouring gives them a nice toasted look. The meat patty is still half real – we can’t seem to budge the government on that. Still, being able to advertise 100% all beef helps – as long as the fat, bone, guts etc that go into it all comes from a cow, we’re home free. Notice the use of the black lines of dye, to make it appear the meat has just come off the grill.
An interesting experiment has been done with some of our ever-thick milk shakes. We wanted to see how long the latex used to keep it together would hold up under the combined attacks of various strawberry, chocolate, etc. dyes, the fats and gums of the milk mixture, and the acids from the artificial flavours. You’ll be pleased to know that some of them still were thick after four months of refrigeration.
It is easy to see how latex based paints can last for so many years. We are now experimenting with making our french fries out of pulped wood chips. Texture, flavour and colour have all been overcome, but there still seems to be some unfortunate reactions to the hot fat.